MANILA, Philippines – Team NP opened game 1 with a fury as Jacky” EternalEnvy” Mao’s Bristleback quickly scored a double kill, drawing first blood after the first smoke rotation attempt by Clement “Puppey” Ivanov’s Jakiro and Yazied “YapzOr” Jaradat’s Clockwer failed horribly.
The midlane, on the other hand, proved to be a favorable lane for Adrian “FATA-” Trinks’ Templar Assassin as an XP-hungry Yeik Nai “MidOne” Zheng’s Invoker resulted in less rotations from Secret’s supports. Although NP was able to build a significant lead during the early- and mid-game phases – even securing 2 Roshan objectives uncontested – Secret’s high ground defense resulted in NP sacrificing their cores almost every time just to take down a set of Barracks at the bottom lane. Secret’s defense was built around YapzOr’s skillful utilization of the Power Cogs and Pyo “MP” No-a’s Luna quick clearing of the pushing creepwave.
The game continued to drag until the 60-minute mark when Secret’s lineup truly shined. They secured the Aegis and Refresher’s Orb on MidOne, engaged NP one last time, forcing multiple buybacks for the defense. NP tapped out of Game 1 and Secret scored a 1-0 lead.
Game 2 proved to be NP’s playground as the draft centered around FATA-’s Luna, complemented by the protective team-fight support combination of Kurtis “Aui_2000” Ling’s Treant Protector and Johan “pieliedie” Astrom’s Warlock.
Secret tried to run an offensive lineup of their own led by MP’s Troll Warlord and MidOne’s Queen of Pain with the offlane Abaddon on Maurice “KheZu” Gutmann. Learning from their mistakes from game 1, NP played with absolute dominance in Game 2 with FATA- absolutely wreaking havoc, earning a score of 20 kills. The individual performance was more than half of NP’s overall kill score of 32; Secret had 12. NP’s dominance was felt throughout the game and ultimately caused Secret to tap out as they head to a do-or-die game 3.
A “questionable” surprise came from Puppey’s pocket as Lycan was suddenly drafted and placed in the hands of MP. MP attempted to run a split-push lineup with the rest of the Secret squad, drafting heroes such as Ember Spirit for MidOne, Khezu’s Slardar and the Earth Spirit for YapZor.
NP, on the other hand, brought the Bristleback for EternalEnvy once again, frontlining for FATA-’s Lina and the Legion Commander for MSS. Secret went to secure the early game with numerous rotations to help maximize the Lycan’s split-pushing capabilities, but Puppey’s squad was not able to secure any tower throughout the 30-minute game. NP responded appropriately to Secret’s rotations, resulting in many back-and-forth fights.
While the draft looked eerily similar to game 1’s, the difference this time is that NP’s sustainability in extended teamfights is complemented by pieliedie’s Io and MSS Legion Commander. This resulted in quick retaliations and ensured that the Bristleback tanked as much damage as possible.
EternalEnvy’s goal to settle the score with Puppey (there had been a controversy involving the 2 players a few months back) was evident in Game 3 as he was continously on the front line, killing multiple heroes together with FATA-. The inspired performance ultimately won NP the series, 2-1, eliminating Secret from the Manila Masters. – Rappler.com
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